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Ping Tom Field House gets Alterations, Takes a Step Forward

In a document derived from last week's public meeting (go here for the PDF), the city's Public Buildings Commission has introduced modifications to the Ping Tom Memorial Park Field House.
The newest component of Ping Tom's Phase II expansion, the field house can now move forward with the city's blessing. The $13M project will include a gym, fitness center, two club rooms, and a pool. According to The Chicago Journal, there was a question at one point about the budget for a pool, but Park District board member Scott Hanlon confirmed the inclusion of the indoor pool (or natatorium, if you will). Savings realized through a site adjustment freed up $3.5M— plenty for a pool.

As for the field house, SMNG-A Architects put forth a rough sketch a while back but now it looks like the PBC is working strictly from a prototype design for the roughly 28,000-square-foot building. At one point, the field house was to have nearly twice the square footage. Along with the downsizing, the biggest adjustment is to the siting. Originally, the field house was to occupy the northwest corner of the site flush with 18th street and the rail lines. Discovery of buried track and shallow ground water led to the decision to push the building further north. Construction will be easier and cheaper at the new elevated spot, and— as a bonus—the ball fields will not need to be relocated. According to the PBC's project timeline, construction should begin in the fall and finish in late 2013. But this isn't the last addition to the new 11-acre park. One of four public boathouses is slated to arrive in the not-too-distant future.
·Ping Tom field house moving forward [Chicago Journal]
·Complete Ping Tom Park Coverage [Curbed Chicago]
·Ping Tom Memorial Park Fieldhouse [PBC]